CSIRO researchers study the behaviour of bushfires, how to build better homes and better protect fire fighters. They acknowledge the invaluable contributions of communities and volunteer fire brigades with whom they work to collect the critical data and scientific evidence to improve our understanding of bushfires and, ultimately, save lives in the future.
Bushfire in Australia: understanding ‘hell on Earth’
A bushfire is one of the most terrifying natural phenomena that anyone is likely to experience in Australia. To be caught in a bushfire is to witness a true hell on earth — conditions hot enough to melt metal, heat fluxes that literally vaporise vegetation, and smoke plumes so dense they turn day into night.
Fire danger: topography, weather and fuel
The ‘fire behaviour triangle’ – topography, weather and fuel – represents the three key factors that influence how a bushfire behaves. Weaken any one of these and a bushfire becomes more manageable.
Bushfire-proof houses: raising the standards
Designing houses to withstand bushfire is about balancing not only the bushfire resilience of the house but also the aesthetic qualities and functionality. Researchers have helped develop a new standard with the housing industry for bushfire-proofing steel framed houses.